After 11 days and 1291 miles VIRE NORD is now anchored in the lovely lagoon at
the uninhabited Direction Island, Cocos (Keeling) atoll with 2 Ozzie boats.
After leaving Carnavon we were treated with a gentle 3 day introduction to passage
making again. We were relieved as this helped us to settle into our routines and life onboard our moving home. During the
middle of our trip the trades picked up to 30 knots for a few days which made life onboard uncomfortable but soon after the
winds settled down to 15-20 and for a total of 5 days we were able to fly the spinnaker when the winds dropped even more.
We had a really good trip and a bonus full moon.
One morning I woke up to find my husband
of 13 years with a shaven head – he said that he always wanted to try it at least once. It took only a few days and
I was used to the new look. Now his hair has grown a little bit more.
We arrived here at night and entered the lagoon under full moon – we were
even able to see the coral bommies and dropped the anchor about 1 minute before the 22nd of May, Mike’s 43rd birthday.
He celebrated with (Not sipping) a Kilkenny which was a gift from our good friends Matt and Earla at the Fremantle Sailing
Club. The next morning we proceeded into the inner lagoon and anchored close in, in turquoise water just off a classic tropical
island beach – white sand, swaying palms etc. On arrival we were welcomed by the local inhabitants – 5 black tip
reef sharks circled the boat. We have since figured out that they are complete wimps, and take flight as soon as you jump
in the water.
On our last day of the passage we were very keen to catch a fish for our arrival.
We managed to hook a large yellowfin tuna and after an half an hours struggle, Mike’s belly aching from his “Surecatch”
belt, we managed to lose it after it got tangled up in our self steering gear. We were not impressed and didn’t look
forward to any more canned food. So after 2 days in the anchorage we set off on a fishing trip – after several hours
of criscrossing the pass we finally caught a big eye tuna which has been wonderful eating and improved our life standard considerably.
We had a brief visit to Home Island yesterday – the Cocos Malay village. This is a peaceful and friendly Muslim community, they live in rows and rows of
identical houses provided by the Australian government. The ladies are covered up from head to toe – this makes a funny
scene as they use quad bikes for their transport. We have yet to visit West Island which is the home of the 100 or so white
Yesterday we went for an excellent snorkel in “The Rip” – a narrow
gap between Directional island and a sand cay where the clear ocean water shoots through into the lagoon creating an exciting
fast drift snorkel amongs lots of healthy coral and fish of all colours and sizes. We will definitely go back for more.
Mike has been trying the surf just on the
outside of Direction island, but with the waves breaking onto the reef, he has been very cautious.
We hope to stay here until the 1st of June.